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Carl Gorka
05-04-2010, 11:18 AM
Currently, at CV AGM there are 3 groups entitled to vote for executive positions.

1. Club delegates.
2. The incumbent CV executive
3. Life Members of CV

However, I personally think this is unfair and undemocratic. A club delegate represents as many as 20 individuals, while Life Members and Exec's get one vote per person. I personally believe that only club delegates should be allowed to vote at the CV election, and I would welcome the imput on others into this debate.

Spiny Norman
05-04-2010, 01:14 PM
I also don't understand why the current executive and/or life members should have special voting rights in an AGM (and I was not aware that they did).

If anyone feels strongly enough about it, they would need to put a motion to the AGM to remove those rights.

Garvinator
05-04-2010, 01:25 PM
I also don't understand why the current executive and/or life members should have special voting rights in an AGM (and I was not aware that they did).

If anyone feels strongly enough about it, they would need to put a motion to the AGM to remove those rights.Can I put in a motion?

ER
05-04-2010, 05:16 PM
Can I put in a motion?

only if you manage to get more than 5 present in your AGM!

TrueBeliever
05-04-2010, 09:55 PM
Well that will put the Queensland turkey out of contention

Carl Gorka
05-04-2010, 10:07 PM
I also don't understand why the current executive and/or life members should have special voting rights in an AGM (and I was not aware that they did).

If anyone feels strongly enough about it, they would need to put a motion to the AGM to remove those rights.

In the CV constitution it states:

3 (1) Membership of the Association shall be limited to natural persons classified by the Association as:-

(a) Delegates;

(b) Members of the Executive; and

(c) Honorary life members.


Rule 8.2 states

The right to vote at a General Meeting shall be limited to members of the Association as defined in rule 3

who are present at the meeting.

Garvinator
05-04-2010, 10:53 PM
Well that will put the Queensland turkey out of contentionWhat are you talking about?

snowyriverman
16-04-2010, 09:59 PM
I would also like to know why you ("Il Cavaliere inesistente") think that this is fair.....

I encourage others to also ask you this question too. Firegoat, what do you think?

In my opinion, I think that it is totally unfair. It simply encourages one set of rules for a few people and a different set for others. There is no level playing field. CVAs members should be clubs, not individuals - therefore, why should ANY individual who is not a club delegate get a vote in the first place?


The very structure of the Chess Victoria Association of Clubs is a proven failure. It is like no other State Chess Organisation in Australia.
It has seen misbehaviour of democratic objectives for all of the past 20 years.
The concept of Clubs voting for priorities and resource allocation for a State Association (which professes to have objectives for the whole of the chess community in the State) was always bound to fail to achieve a match. Clubs will instead vote to look after themselves rather than the chess community at large.

We have seen misbehaviour at the most recent crucial election of 2009 where a number of Clubs did not even attend the Annual General Meeting. Clearly those absentee Clubs disenfranchised their entire membership; nobody represented the views of members of those Clubs who failed to send delegates to the AGM. Absence of Clubs from the CVA AGM is a misbehaviour that has been repeated many times over in living memory.
Recently we have also seen misbehaviour of three of the large Melbourne based Clubs in the 2009 election in that they directed a block vote on the crucial motions. A block vote means that the Club has squashed the divergent views that naturally exist within a Club; forcing one view-point only to be put forward for that Club. It is not democratic to disenfranchise minority views within a Club. The fault stems from the very structure of the CVA where Clubs are an artificial construct sitting between the chess playing community of junior players, school players, social players, coaches, elite players and Club players. The artificial construct of Club delegates puts all the votes in the hands of a narrow-focussed set of cliques.

The solution is a direct membership scheme as put forward in this BLOG post (http://cordover.com.au/2009/08/direct-membership/ (without of course the totally unjustified rider, in that BLOG, that membership should be $50 per individual per year).
A direct membership scheme can enable all viewpoints from the chess community to put forward and considered by the top forum in the State. Direct membership would dilute down the current 100% control by established Clubs. It would allow divergent views to come forward, and for other interest groups a chance to use the democratic process to get their proposals considered.







But even worse in my opinion, is the fact that the individuals on the outgoing CV executive also get a vote each!!!!! This is one of the most ridiculous rules Ive ever seen in any organization! It simply ensures that once somebody or some group is in power, that it is much harder to get rid of them! Any system that gives people in power such an easy way to remain in power is both flawed and undemocratic...

The flaw in your reasoning Grant is that only one individual stood again for election for 2009/10. He had one vote and would obviously vote for himself. There was no group that retained power from 2008/9 to 2009/10. Apart from one individual, who moved successfully from Vice President to President, there is now a complete change of guard, as of April 2010.

The MCC office-bearers have every right to call for a democratic structure for CVA.
The past 20 years has shown that Clubs misbehaviour
in not representing their members;
Clubs misbehave in block votes, thus squashing minority views,
and Clubs misbehave by voting for what suits a Club, not the larger chess issues of the chess community.

The democracy we need is direct membership; not a strengthening of control by the cliques who run Clubs.

Carl Gorka
16-04-2010, 10:44 PM
The very structure of the Chess Victoria Association of Clubs is a proven failure. It is like no other State Chess Organisation in Australia.
It has seen misbehaviour of democratic objectives for all of the past 20 years.
The concept of Clubs voting for priorities and resource allocation for a State Association (which professes to have objectives for the whole of the chess community in the State) was always bound to fail to achieve a match. Clubs will instead vote to look after themselves rather than the chess community at large.

We have seen misbehaviour at the most recent crucial election of 2009 where a number of Clubs did not even attend the Annual General Meeting. Clearly those absentee Clubs disenfranchised their entire membership; nobody represented the views of members of those Clubs who failed to send delegates to the AGM. Absence of Clubs from the CVA AGM is a misbehaviour that has been repeated many times over in living memory.
Recently we have also seen misbehaviour of three of the large Melbourne based Clubs in the 2009 election in that they directed a block vote on the crucial motions. A block vote means that the Club has squashed the divergent views that naturally exist within a Club; forcing one view-point only to be put forward for that Club. It is not democratic to disenfranchise minority views within a Club. The fault stems from the very structure of the CVA where Clubs are an artificial construct sitting between the chess playing community of junior players, school players, social players, coaches, elite players and Club players. The artificial construct of Club delegates puts all the votes in the hands of a narrow-focussed set of cliques.

The solution is a direct membership scheme as put forward in this BLOG post (http://cordover.com.au/2009/08/direct-membership/ (without of course the totally unjustified rider, in that BLOG, that membership should be $50 per individual per year).
A direct membership scheme can enable all viewpoints from the chess community to put forward and considered by the top forum in the State. Direct membership would dilute down the current 100% control by established Clubs. It would allow divergent views to come forward, and for other interest groups a chance to use the democratic process to get their proposals considered.


The flaw in your reasoning Grant is that only one individual stood again for election for 2009/10. He had one vote and would obviously vote for himself. There was no group that retained power from 2008/9 to 2009/10. Apart from one individual, who moved successfully from Vice President to President, there is now a complete change of guard, as of April 2010.

The MCC office-bearers have every right to call for a democratic structure for CVA.
The past 20 years has shown that Clubs misbehaviour
in not representing their members;
Clubs misbehave in block votes, thus squashing minority views,
and Clubs misbehave by voting for what suits a Club, not the larger chess issues of the chess community.

The democracy we need is direct membership; not a strengthening of control by the cliques who run Clubs.

While I might not agree with all that you say, a direct membership is something I'd certainly agree with:)

Ninja
16-04-2010, 10:44 PM
Recently we have also seen misbehaviour of three of the large Melbourne based Clubs in the 2009 election in that they directed a block vote on the crucial motions.

Out of curiosity, which three clubs do you believe voted in a block ?

ER
17-04-2010, 01:46 AM
The MCC office-bearers have every right to call for a democratic structure for CVA.
The past 20 years has shown that Clubs misbehaviour
• in not representing their members;
• Clubs misbehave in block votes, thus squashing minority views,
• and Clubs misbehave by voting for what suits a Club, not the larger chess issues of the chess community.

As I understand from your very important article, the failure of Chess Victoria as an organisation consists of allowing and/or condoning the respective Clubs’ misbehaviour in either abstaining of or, when participating in AGMs, exercising undemocratic methods (such as block vote) of serving their interests.
Those interests , again as you suggest in your well written document, do not necessarily represent their members’ opinion.
In my case, due to working hours and other priorities, bar one year (2008-2009) I had to be a member of two clubs (namely the Melbourne Chess Club and Box Hill Chess Club) since 2003 when after a very lengthy period of time I started playing Chess again.
This year I have already joined a Club - Noble Park Chess Club, I will renew my membership with Box Hill Chess Club on Friday, 23 and at a later stage will rejoin Melbourne Chess Club for the remaining of the year.
Why am I referring to all that?
In the most recent AGM, the political orientation of the two Clubs I belonged then was diametrically opposite. I didn’t really care about the outcome in terms of who would be the winner, since I have friends in both sides; however, the exclusion of very capable people from CV’s running as a result of the elections was one of the factors that saddened me. We cannot afford to have those people out of the running of the game.
On the other hand, I did all I could to present all developments before and after the elections, in an non biased way in the form of interviews, statements and news segments in this Chess Chat Forum.
I believe that chatters, were sufficiently informed and most importantly did participate in the ongoing discussions.
There is more to that though. The main reason of my membership to Chess Clubs is to play Chess. The vast majority of chess players are people like myself. Rightly or wrongly we are not involved in politics and to be honest we don’t really care. That shows in the Nos. of members participating in our Clubs’ AGMs, numbers which aren’t really representative of the factual memberships.
In the case of the MCC and the BHCC, I can assure you that members of both Clubs were happy with their Committees directives in regards to the elections. There were simply NO moves against their official line which was formed after lengthy and serious discussions.
One thing that I really hate and fought against it all my life is exclusion.
The system of having Clubs with larger memberships being entitled to a proportionally larger No. of delegates is unfair to smaller Clubs and contributes to polarisation. We definitely must look at it more seriously.
Funny thing is that during recent unofficial discussions, in Sydney, some people there, expressed the view that our (the Victorian) model of running Chess was more successful than theirs and were stretching the importance of more Club representation.
Thanks for adding to this very important discussion.


The democracy we need is direct membership; not a strengthening of control by the cliques who run Clubs.

I really encourage the moderators to formulate this proposal into a poll question. However, I am diametrically opposed to the underlined term which I find offensive and uncalled for. People of committees of all Clubs that I had the pleasure to meet throughout the years are hard working people who sacrifice a lot of their personal time for the improvement of their CLubs and as such of Chess in our community.

Kevin Bonham
17-04-2010, 02:42 AM
I really encourage the moderators to formulate this proposal into a poll question.

It's really not our role to do so. Any poster can start a poll thread on direct democracy vs indirect democracy in CV if they want to and if they need technical help we can provide that. Of course as a poster with some sort of expertise in opinion poll analysis, I am happy to provide feedback if someone wants to run a proposed poll question and set of answers past me for my view on whether the poll will actually provide meaningful results. But I'm sure a simple poll on whether or not CV should switch to direct democracy isn't really rocket science. ;)

By the way the TCA has this kind of indirect democracy for executive elections too, though in our case life members don't vote in those elections. In all other respects the TCA is a direct democracy. In our case the indirect democracy clause is a legacy from an old constitution and I think that its purpose was linked to the dispersed nature of the Tassie population and a perceived fear that the club of the host city of the AGM could very easily stack an AGM election. We're slowly looking at ways to get rid of it and go direct (possibly via postal or internet voting) though we haven't had a formally contested election in my time on board.

Spiny Norman
17-04-2010, 06:57 AM
in not representing their members;
Clubs misbehave in block votes, thus squashing minority views,
and Clubs misbehave by voting for what suits a Club, not the larger chess issues of the chess community
Interesting post by you above. I have some sympathies with some of what you wrote. But I really want to take issue with what you have written about the behaviour of (some) clubs, and in particular about the three dot-points quoted above.

Firstly, you seem to be conflating a number of concepts. "Clubs" and "CV" are associations. They are not institutions in the way that, say, a parliament is a political institution. As associations, they are governed firstly by their "articles of association" (or constitution, whatever such documents are called now) and also by the law of the state of Victoria. There are therefore clear rules about how they can and cannot behave. Trying to draw an analogy with broader political/governance ideas has limitations.

More importantly though, I am not sure that you really understand the principles of how an association works. The members elect a committee which is charged with governing the association between Annual General Meetings (AGMs). The committee typically has complete power to make decisions on behalf of the members. Any limits are defined in the articles of association of that particular group. There is no obligation on the committee to "represent the diverse views of its members", unless this is spelled out in the articles of association. Rather, the whole idea of a committee is to avoid having to take polls of the members for every decision it makes. Its just horribly inefficient otherwise.

Lastly, each club's committee has an obligation to act in the best interests of its members. Unless spelled out to the contrary in the club's articles of association, there is no obligation at all to "act in the best interests of the chess community". Such ideas sound nice, but are actually rather silly when you analyse them in detail. How could a suburban club committee know what is in the best interests of the broader chess community? They can't; they might guess at it and get it totally wrong. They have no resources to poll the chess community as a whole. That is why committees which run an association have an obligation to their members, not to anyone else.

As for how our club decided how to vote in the recent CV elections, we had a fairly open informal discussion at one of our club meeting nights, where the views of both committee and non-committee members were aired. Based on comments made, a decision on what was in the best interests of Croydon Chess club was taken, and that is how we voted.

If our decision didn't happen to suit the broader chess community, or individuals who are not members of Croydon Chess, or the general public, or even a minority of our members ... tough bikkies ... it was what suited the majority of our members and that's what's best for us.

Maybe that sounds harsh to some, but that's life.

Spiny Norman
17-04-2010, 07:04 AM
However, I am diametrically opposed to the underlined term which I find offensive and uncalled for. People of committees of all Clubs that I had the pleasure to meet throughout the years are hard working people who sacrifice a lot of their personal time for the improvement of their CLubs and as such of Chess in our community.
Yeah, I'm with you JaK ... this "cliques" idea is just a little bit bullshit.

You can pretty much predict when it will be trotted out. It will be when a decision is taken by a committee which doesn't suit an individual member.

If people want their views to be considered, they can verbalise them, and usually a committee will consider them in a careful fashion. If people actually want to be able to vote on such decisions, they can:

-- vote on who they want to represent them on the committee; and/or
-- put themselves forward to be on the committee

Most of them don't seem to want to do all the work which necessarily comes with having a position of influence within a club. Most of us can sense a self-aggrandising selfish person a mile off; people who want to have all the influence and control (yes, its often about power) and yet they aren't prepared to serve others and do the hours and hours and hours of un-noticed work in the background that is necessary for a club to run effectively.

A committee is not a clique; its just a little bit bullshit to imply otherwise.

Carl Gorka
18-04-2010, 07:14 PM
It's really not our role to do so. Any poster can start a poll thread on direct democracy vs indirect democracy in CV if they want to and if they need technical help we can provide that. Of course as a poster with some sort of expertise in opinion poll analysis, I am happy to provide feedback if someone wants to run a proposed poll question and set of answers past me for my view on whether the poll will actually provide meaningful results. But I'm sure a simple poll on whether or not CV should switch to direct democracy isn't really rocket science. ;)



I only started the thread to start a dialogue, I didn't think a poll was necessary and would have dropped the subject if everyone had been happy about the way CV runs its elections. It has been interesting on both fora seeing the arguments form:D

ER
18-04-2010, 07:29 PM
... I didn't think a poll was necessary and would have dropped the subject if ...
Chicken! :P

Carl Gorka
18-04-2010, 07:39 PM
Chicken! :P

Haha:D

No mate, I know my place, and if everyone's happy with the way things are, then best not to change a good thing. But a few people said to me that the voting system was wrong last year so I put it in the public domain.

You can call me a chicken if I don't take it further if (as it appears) others agree with me that the system doesn't seem right.

ER
18-04-2010, 07:48 PM
I don't think the majority is happy with the way things are, ...
The problem is there is a variety of things that make them not happy apart from the direct vs indirect thingy.
I 've also stated things that make me not happy very clearly!
On the other hand I, won't let unhappiness be a part for my life more than a few seconds! :lol:

Carl Gorka
18-04-2010, 07:51 PM
On the other hand I, won't let unhappiness be a part for my life more than a few seconds! :lol:

Good way to live life:)

ER
18-04-2010, 08:20 PM
Good way to live life:)
Thanks mate, I know you are a person of optimistic disposition too! Looking forward to see you and the other boys at the Club from June onwards! :)

Desmond
19-04-2010, 03:30 PM
I don't think the majority is happy with the way things are, ...
Welcome to democracy.

ER
19-04-2010, 10:11 PM
Welcome to democracy.

lol spasibo!!! :P

Carl Gorka
20-04-2010, 11:18 AM
ok, it seems that there is enough dissent to take the case a stage further. I will take the issue to the MCC committee and with their backing will canvas the other club committee's. If a majority of clubs see a problem, then I suppose the next stage is something raised at an AGM.

This morning I talked to Leonid Sandler, though not about this issue. Next year I will be stepping down from the MCC committee to become a humble duty officer of the club. In this case I would consider standing for CV committee, though I'd be reluctant to use my voting power if I joined the committee as I feel it's just plain wrong.

Garvinator
20-04-2010, 11:46 AM
ok, it seems that there is enough dissent to take the case a stage further. Not so sure about that. There is enough dissent on this board, but you can find that for just about any issue. In the real world, I doubt there is much dissent apart from general apathy.

Also, what are your actual chances of getting the constitution changed. Are you even close to meeting the CV requirements for constitutional change?

Carl Gorka
20-04-2010, 11:50 AM
Not so sure about that. There is enough dissent on this board, but you can find that for just about any issue. In the real world, I doubt there is much dissent apart from general apathy.

I'm closer to the Victorian clubs than you are.


Also, what are your actual chances of getting the constitution changed. Are you even close to meeting the CV requirements for constitutional change?

No idea. Anyway, the issue is about trying to change things, and this has to start somewhere.

ER
20-04-2010, 02:23 PM
Next year I will be stepping down from the MCC committee to become a humble duty officer of the club. '
I think you should give this a second thought! Although I believe that some younger members should be prepared to undertake responsibilities in the committee, your position at the MCC is very important and your role, always in my opinion should be maintained for at least three years. Grant's revolution must be continued and its short and long term objectives achieved without haste.


In this case I would consider standing for CV committee, though I'd be reluctant to use my voting power if I joined the committee as I feel it's just plain wrong
That's really GREAT NEWS :clap: :clap: :clap: You can do both ie being a member of CV's and MCC's executive! You can do it!

Carl Gorka
20-04-2010, 05:13 PM
I think you should give this a second thought! Although I believe that some younger members should be prepared to undertake responsibilities in the committee, your position at the MCC is very important and your role, always in my opinion should be maintained for at least three years. Grant's revolution must be continued and its short and long term objectives achieved without haste.

I will still be at the club 3 nights a week, so it's not like I can't be consulted. However, I signed up for a year to kick start the club into action, then agreed to a second year as more needed doing. Hopefully the systems and structures will be in good shape for a new committee to take over.



That's really GREAT NEWS :clap: :clap: :clap: You can do both ie being a member of CV's and MCC's executive! You can do it!

Leonid has been asking me to join for quite a while but I can't do both jobs, it's just too much. I don't know whether I'll stand for CV, but I'll certainly help as much as possible.

ER
08-05-2010, 07:11 PM
Did the CV Executive meeting take place? Correct me if I am wrong, but I think it was scheduled for this week wasn't it?